Volume 5 Issue 4

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Page 16 of 63

I Wish all Pregnant Women to Know about Birth When I was pregnant, I seemed to be a magnet for birth war stories – cords around the neck, emergency cesareans, and more. It took a lot of inner conviction to believe in birth as a natural, beautiful event that my body was capable of, rather than a "disaster waiting to happen," as one obstetrician warned me it was. But inner conviction I decided to have, and my four children were born at home, peacefully, and without drama or trauma. I made sure I was in awesome health throughout my pregnancies, eating an organic, plant-based diet. I did yoga daily, spent time in nature, and meditated on the type of birth I wanted to have. And then I surrendered to the forces of nature. The power I experienced as a woman has given me confidence in so many areas of my life and I so wish this for other women. Sadly, however, natural birth is becoming endangered! About one in three women in the US will have their babies by cesarean section. 10 THINGS 10 THINGS Maybe that sounds like no big deal – but actually, it's major abdominal surgery and increases your risks of complications over natural birth. Cesareans are grossly overdone in US hospitals. And they often make recovery and breastfeeding much more challenging. They expose your baby to an antibiotic (all moms having a cesarean are given antibiotics at the time of surgery) before she or he is even born. And most of the ones that are performed turn out to be unnecessary. Also, many more women will have their labor induced or experience some form of obstetric intervention. The downturn in natural birth is so significant that a group of researchers wanting to study the natural course of labor couldn't find a large enough group of women birthing naturally in any one place to study them! But we can't let natural birth go extinct because it's way more than just a romantic ideal. Babies born vaginally (and without medication) have many health advantages. For example, just being exposed to mom's flora on the way out of the birth canal decreases the lifetime likelihood of developing digestive problems, allergies, and even obesity. While we can't fully control what happens in our births, and of course, sometimes interventions are necessary (though often they aren't!), you can embrace core beliefs that will increase your chances of having the birth experience that is optimally healthy for you and baby. I Wish all Pregnant Women to Know about Birth Abby's Magazine - Volume 5 Issue 4| Page 17

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